Category Archives: Customer Service

Customer service skills for every employee

Customer Service Tips

There are a few customer service skills that every business and employee needs to master to succeed and to avoid any customer service train-wreck and lose customers.

No matter what contact you have with customers, whether it is over the phone, face-to-face, in a shop, or in an office, good customer service skills is essential. The main benefit of good customer service is a happy customer who will likely return and/or tell others about the excellent experience they had in their dealings with your company. Word of mouth recommendation are the best form of free marketing a company wish for and extremely valuable.

Here are few customer service resolutions for any business and employee to adopt:

Hire better – No business can provide good customer service without hiring the right employees.
Improve employee training – The service an employee provides is only as good as the training they receive.
Greet customers with a smile – Be aware of your body language and always greet your customers with a smile.
Be patient – Always be patient with customers who are trying to reach out for support when they are confused and frustrated.
Customer proximity – Always stay visible and available to your customers but don’t hover and infringe on their space.
Empower employees – It is important for employees to feel that they are empowered to solve problems and ratify their customers without worrying about a manager looking over their shoulder.
Be proactive – Always be proactive and ask how you may be of service but don’t overdo it.
Use appropriate greetings – Be sure to use age-appropriate greeting and avoid referring to older customers and women as ‘guys’.
Let your customers talk – Never interrupt your customers even if they are angry and expressing their feelings. Wait for them to finish and release their frustrations and calm down.
Use clear communication skills – Always deal with the problem at hand without going into your life history.
Know your product or service – Makes sure that you are an expert about your product and services, and if you don’t know something don’t be afraid to seek assistance to answer any customer questions. The best forward-facing employees in your company will work on having a deep knowledge of how your product works.
Use the correct tone – Don’t smile, laugh or mock upset customers. Convey empathy with a soft tone.
Greet your customers correctly – The way you greet a customer is the first impression and interaction and far more memorable. Use an appropriate greeting to make your customer feel welcome.
Listen to your customer – If you don’t listen to your customer then you will not be able to help them effectively and meet their needs. The ability to really listen to customers is so crucial for providing great service for a number of reasons.
Never avoid customers – Never turn away, walk away, start a phone conversation, or hide behind a counter when a customer approaches.
Treat customers equally – Remember that all customers deserve the same attention regardless of their age or appearance.
Leave you cellphone in your bag – Make all personal calls on your break and never around customers.
Monitor customer body language – Learn to read body language and be aware if a customers requires your assistance.

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How to transform your customer service experience and culture

Customer Service Excellence

As a business owner or manager would like to see increased productivity, have more customers walking through your doors, and more net profit? Do you want to create a work environment and excellent customer service and experience that is far more that just good customer service?

As a leader or manager, here are a few tips to transform your customer experience and corporate culture that will support and sustains your customer service programs.

Stand for the right thing – Have you trained your employees to understand and know what exactly your company stands for. Make sure that your company’s organizing principles are meaningful, short and memorable.

Make sure to hire the right way – Once you are sure about what your company stand for, you need to hire employees that are congruent with you customer-centric values.

Pay your employees the right way – Understand that your company’s brand and reputation is based upon the interaction and experience your customers have with your employees. Remember it is your employees on ground level who interact with your customers on a daily basis.

Take the right approach when it comes to your company’s personal policies – Forget about reprimanding your employees or docking their salaries for being late to return to the office after a lunch break. Don’t evaluate your employees based on average handle time on phone calls.

Remind right – Remember it is the duty and role of the leader’s to make sure that employees are constantly reminded of the core principles which form the foundation of your customer service excellence culture.

Train and coach the right way – If your employees feel that their jobs are only for the paycheck at the end of the month, then the company leaders have failed in their duty. Employees need continuous coaching and encouragement. Don’t wait and leave it to the annual performance review.

Discipline employees in a productive and meaningful way – Note that customer service excellence is defined by the consistency of your customer serve training. Never allow employees to perform below your customers expectations. This will only lead to a situation where your company is seen and has a reputation of poor service.

Create the right policies and standards – Develop and create policies that are achievable and make sense. Understand what is reasonably expected from your customers and set these down in your standards policies.

Empower your employees to service your customers – In the event that your standard policies do not cover all the unexpected situation, you need to empower your employees to service your customers without equivocation, on the spot, and not have to run and find the nearest manager for assistance.

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Social media helping customers deal with complaints far quicker

Social Media

 

A recent experiment undertaken by a BBC TV programme to test if businesses response quicker to customer complaint via Twitter and other social media networks as compared to those customers who lodge complaints via email.

The basis of the experiment was that five different companies were contacted via Twitter and email detailing the same consumer complaint. The results showed that social media is a far more effective tool to handle consumer complaints. All five companies responded personally  to the tweets that were posted.

The fastest response time to the tweets was 3 minutes, whilst the slowest was 1 hour 10 minutes. When it came to the email complaints, only one of the five companies responded and that took over 24 hours.

According to numerous social media experts the realists of this simple test were not very surprising. The reasons given for the quicker responses was that companies respond quicker and feel obliged to respond when complaints are discussed in a public forum. Complaints via public forums has enormous effect because it is a public forum as compared to email and personal phone calls which are private. A tweet or Facebook post are out there for the world to see. Therefore the company need to respond to protect their  brand and image.

At the same time, experts agree that complaining via social media network does not always solve the issue or guaranteed to fix the problem. Consumers should be aware that even though you might get a response quicker when using social networks to air your views, this does not necessarily mean that your complaint will be evolved quicker.

There have been cases whereby social media has in fact been successful and forced companies to deal with disgruntled customers far quicker. There is a reported case where a British Airways customers paid to get his complaint promoted on Twitter in order to reach a wider audience. the customer was angry and fed up with British Airways for the way they were handling the issue of lost luggage. The customers paid complaint read as follows, ” Don’t fly @BritishAirways. Their customers service is horrendous”.

British Airways responded almost immediately stating that they would like to apologies to the customers for the inconvenience caused and that they have been in contact with the customer and will deliver the bag the following day.

There is also the case where a customer posted a picture of a bill on Facebook which received from Virgin Media for a late payment sent to the individual’s father in-law, who was deceased. The bill that was sent also included a late penalty fee. This post was shared more that 53,000 times and forced an apology from the company to the family.

In the end of the day, social media is a powerful tool to deal customer complaints and grudges and is forcing businesses to act far more quickly to protect their brand and image.

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Ignite business services

Ignite business services offers energized facilitation and training services which are customized according to a companies needs, focused on enhancing the sustainability of the program and the learning. Ignite is passionate about making a difference and adding value to your business.

They specialize in communication, sales, customer service.

The Team

“Sacha has provided the solution by strategically breaking down the problem to the most basic form and creating a practical, easy to use, step-by-step programme that is fun, enjoyable and easy to adapt to; at any level. I would recommend her to any organisation trying to get their staff motivated and productive. She assisted with staff retention and record breaking sales months.

The workshops have been priceless” Momentum 2007

Sacha Traub has spent the last decade conquering and mastering the sales and service industry. Identifying a gap in the market, Sacha devised training materials to aid the development of staff and management to assist in creating a holistic, productive and powerful work force. Sacha is successful in empowering individuals to learn, improve and take pride in every aspect of what they do. By providing people with accessible skills and knowledge she has enabled many to open doors of opportunity and hope, while helping to dispel any possible fears and low self-esteem. Sacha gives people the awareness to pioneer change, both personally and professionally.

Her overseas work experience has given her great insight into a 6-Star customer service culture, acknowledging the importance of achieving optimum sales productivity. These results are achieved through interactive, fun training that is simple and practical providing immediate an impact within your business.

‘Phenomenal, inspirational, powerful’ are all words that are often used when describing Sacha Traub and her facilitating techniques/workshops.

“Sacha’s presentation skills are excellent. Her attention to detail and getting the message across are great strengths. All staff were complimentary about her knowledge and confidence. She has been instrumental in equipping our staff with necessary skills to increase retail sales and guest communication”

 

Focus areas:

Delight your client
Ignite your sales
Time management
Supervisory skills
Performance management
Ignite your interactions
Telephone and Admin skills
Motivational workshops
Cultural diversity
Assertiveness
Change and conflict management

Most popular new course this quarter: Cultural Diversity
Most requested existing course- Ignite your interactions
Most popular basic skills course- Telephone skills

Discount Policy : They also have  discount policy for every 3 people booked the 4th is free.

Why are they different:

Their personal relationships with clients
No minimum number of people to train
Fun and interactive training
Cost effective
Onsite or offsite
Discount policy

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Keybase Training Solutions

Keybase Training Solutions is a state of the art training institution that takes pride in the service they offer their learners.  They offer hands on tuition, small classes and have amazing facilities. Their facilitators are very experienced with years of training which ensures that your course expectations will be met. Keybase Training Solutions is an ISETT Seta accredited center with both Assessors and Moderators and course are aligned to the NQF Unit Standards

The institution offers workshops for all people in management roles:

Leadership

This 1 day workshop will give you skills to build a team, manage your workload and time effectively, and cope with stress and other related issues for people in Leadership roles.

Date:  9 September
Investment:      R1 700 + VAT per person
Call Candice on 011 894-2077 to book now – seats are limited.

 

Keybase is 19 years old, and Cheryl Oelofse, one of the founding members, still runs the Benoni Branch.  They also have a branch in Pretoria, but also offer on-site training nationwide.  Courses can also be customised to suit your needs, or you can attend a public short course.

Contact Cheryl Oelofse at Keybase Training Solutions directly if you need any other information – cheryl@keybase.co.za or 011 894-2077

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